Stuart Bingham
Stuart Bingham holds the World Championship trophy aloft after an excellent victory over Shaun Murphy in Sheffield. (Getty Images)

Stuart Bingham has won the 2015 World Snooker Championship after a thrilling 18-15 victory over Shaun Murphy in Sheffield.

The 20-year professional had only ever progressed past the second round at The Crucible on one previous occasion, but showed tremendous form over the last fortnight to beat former winners Graeme Dott and Ronnie O'Sullivan as well as the gifted Judd Trump en-route to the final.

Trailing Murphy 9-8 after day one, Bingham took the initiative in the afternoon session on 4 May and claimed the first four frames with breaks of 87, 51, 112 and 50.

Murphy, a master of the cue famed for his textbook action and long potting prowess, then won two of the next three to bridge the gap before his opponent confidently secured the last frame before the break to lead 14-11.

With an expectant crowd hoping to witness yet more entertainment in the evening, the two players certainly did not disappoint as 'The Magician' reduced the deficit in the 26th frame before a fine 102 had Bingham back in the ascendancy.

Momentum then shifted sharply once more as two-time finalist Murphy put together a run of three without reply to leave the match tied heading into the mid-session interval.

If the hugely likeable Bingham was feeling the inevitable nerves associated with such a big occasion at this stage, then he certainly did not show it.

Frame 31 was a gruelling but technically skilled affair lasting all of 64 minutes, with a hard-fought victory for Bingham seemingly handing him a crucial psychological advantage as he won the next two to complete his triumph.

"At one stage at 15-15 I thought I was going to do Shaun's [runner-up] speech," Bingham told the BBC after his fairytale win. "It was a 64-minute frame to go 16-15 and that really calmed me down.

"So many family and friends have backed me. It is unbelievable. To beat Shaun in the final tops everything off. Twenty years as professional, blood, sweat and tears on the road. Qualifying in places like Prestatyn and Malvern.

"So many family and friends have backed me. It is unbelievable."